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How to get from Ella to Nuwara Eliya (Complete Guide)

How to get from Ella to Nuwara Eliya (Complete Guide)

Nuwara Eliya is home to many natural wonders of Sri Lanka. You can experience the beautiful tea estates, magical waterfalls and stunning lakes, which create a unique atmosphere with the Pidurutalagala mountain as a backdrop. Situated 1868 metres above sea level, you will be in awe of the breathtaking views overlooking the lush landscape. Taking a trip from Ella to Nuwara Eliya is a must-do when travelling throughout Sri Lanka. You can book your ticket online through 12Go for this journey.

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HOW TO GET FROM ELLA TO NUWARA ELIYA

This blog post is going to explain the options of travel that you can take to get from Ella to Nuwara Eliya, which will help you to find the most suited journey to your plans and then book your ticket online through 12Go. There are currently four forms of transport which you can use that include a train, taxi, minivan or car. I will begin by delving into the details for each route, including information such as the times of travel, departure and arrival stations, commute lengths and ticket pricing.

Following on from this I will discuss how you can get to your departure station in Ella and final destination in Nuwara Eliya, before helping you to understand when is the best time to visit the beautiful city and how long you should spend there.

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Train from Ella

BEST WAY TO BOOK A TICKET ONLINE FROM ELLA TO NUWARA ELIYA

You may not have the time right now to read through this entire article, yet you are ready to start planning your trip from Ella to Nuwara Eliya. To do this, the best way you can book your ticket online is through 12Go. This is a brilliant online booking platform which allows you to compare all of the journeys, forms of transport, travel times, commute lengths and ticket prices so that you can find the most suitable trip to suit your travel plans. They also provide you with the important information which you need to be aware of before booking your ticket online and making the commute from Ella to Nuwara Eliya.

However, if you are interested in more information such as the best time to visit Nuwara Eliya, how long you should spend then and discover a handful of must-do activities that you will want to add to your bucket list, then I suggest you keep on reading.

Taxi Ella - Nuwara Eliya $ 58.74–78.00 56m – 1h 44m
  •   Comfort 3pax
  •   Van 6pax
  •   Van 8pax
  •   Comfort 2pax
Ella Train

4 OPTIONS OF TRAVEL TO GET FROM ELLA TO NUWARA ELIYA

There are currently four options for you to pick from to travel from Ella to Nuwara Eliya which are detailed below…

Option 1 – Train
When travelling from Ella to Nuwara Eliya by train you have over a handful of options to choose from. All trains are operated by Sri Lanka Railway, and depart from either Ella Railway Station or Badulla Railway Station, with the arrival station in Nuwara Eliya being at Nanu Oya. There are two trains which depart directly from Ella, these leave in the morning and take approximately 2 hours and 25 minutes in commute time. The other trains depart from Badulla with the earliest train leaving at 5.45am and the latest at 6pm, the commute time can take from 3 hours and 15 minutes up to 4 hours and 40 minutes.

You have the option to choose between third, second or first class seats with ticket prices costing between $7 to $15 per person. To find out more information and book your ticket online, head over to 12Go.

Option 2 – Taxi
If you want to travel from Ella to Nuwara Eliya by taxi, you can choose between a 2, 3, 6 or 8 person capacity vehicle. Taxis depart from a location of your choice within Ella and arrive at your preferred location in Nuwara Eliya. These are operated by the travel companies Ceylon Roots or Stef Lanka Tours, and can take just under an hour up to roughly 1 hour and 45 minutes in commute time. The cost for these are per vehicle and depend on the person capacity that you choose, starting at $90 and reaching up to $120. Book your taxi online with 12Go.

Option 3 – Minivan – Scenic Minivan by Magical Sri Lanka | Bookaway
You can get from Ella to Nuwara Eliya by minivan with the travel operator Magical Sri Lanka. There is one minivan running per day, which departs from the hotel of your choice in Ella at 1.30pm and arrives at the hotel of your choice in Nuwara Eliya at 3pm, after a 1 hour and 30 minutes commute. This costs $15 per person, which includes a stop off at two tourist attractions as part of a scenic route.

Option 4 – Car – Economy Car by Travel Lanka | Bookaway
To travel from Ella to Nuwara Eliya by car, you can take a 3 person capacity private vehicle from any hotel in Ella to any hotel in Nuwara Eliya. The commute takes 2 hours in travel time, with the earliest departure being at midnight and the latest being at 11.30pm, operated by Travel Lanka. The cost of the option is $127 per vehicle.

Taxi from Ella to Nuwara Eliya

KEY POINTS

These are some great key points to know ahead of booking your ticket online and travelling from Ella to Nuwara Eliya

Most affordable way to travel from Ella to Nuwara Eliya
The cheapest form of transport to take from Ella to Nuwara Eliya is by taking one of trains that departs from Ella Railway Station with a third class seat, as this costs just $7 per person.

Quickest way to travel from Ella to Nuwara Eliya
The fastest way to get from Ella to Nuwara Eliya is with a taxi operated by the travel company Ceylon Roots, as this takes just 56 minutes in commute time.

Arrival and check in times at departure stations
With all of the above travel options from Ella to Nuwara Eliya, there are no specific check in times at the departure stations. However, to avoid missing your pre-booked journey or having to pay late fees, I would suggest being ready to leave 15 minutes before the departure time stated on your ticket.

Luggage allowance for each form of transport
When travelling by train from Ella to Nuwara Eliya there are no luggage allowances stated, but please be considerate that there will be other people on this journey and not a lot of storage space.

When travelling by taxi from Ella to Nuwara Eliya, packing just the essentials you need to take for your trip would be best advised. There are no stated luggage allowances, although there will be limited storage space available.

When travelling from Ella to Nuwara Eliya by minivan or private car each passenger can take 20kg in luggage with them.

Additional information when travelling by train
You will need to pick up your physical boarding pass from the mTicketing service at the train station before departure.

Taxi from Ella

HOW TO BOOK A TICKET ONLINE FROM ELLA TO NUWARA ELIYA

Booking a ticket online to travel from Ella to Nuwara Eliya is made easy with 12Go. Through this online booking platform you are able to find a multitude of information all in one spot. They share details such as;

  • Different forms of transport
  • Travel times for each route
  • Departure and arrival stations
  • The length of each commute
  • Ticket prices

They also inform you of the key information that you will need to know ahead of booking your ticket online and travelling from Ella to Nuwara Eliya, alongside providing you with a reliable form of contact. This is great to have in case any of your travel plans change, or if there are alterations made to the trip you have pre-booked online.

nuwara eliya

HOW TO GET TO YOUR DEPARTURE STATION IN ELLA

To start your journey from Ella to Nuwara Eliya, firstly, you will need to make the commute to your departure station. The most affordable and best option to get around Ella is by foot, however, if this does not suit you there are other options available. You can also get to your departure station by taking an authentic and fun tuk-tuk, hop on a local bus, or book a private taxi.

When deciding which form of transport will be the best one for you to take, double check the time you will need to arrive at your departure station ahead of travelling from Ella to Nuwara Eliya. From this, then have a look at how long the commute will be for each journey, this will help you decide which option will be most suitable for you.

HOW TO GET TO YOUR FINAL DESTINATION IN NUWARA ELIYA

One of the main forms of transport in Nuwara Eliya are private taxis. There are several companies who operate these vehicles, which will help you get to your final destination once having arrived from Ella to Nuwara Eliya. It is also possible to book a private transfer, an authentic tuk-tuk or shuttle service. Before taking the trip from Ella to Nuwara Eliya, it is a great idea to check the distance from your arrival station to final destination and whether you will need to pre-book your chosen form of transport for the commute, or if you can organise it once you are there.

nuwara eliya

BEST TIME TO VISIT NUWARA ELIYA

Nuwara Eliya is known for having one of the coolest climates within Sri Lanka, which makes it a wonderful destination to explore around as the temperatures are usually always enjoyable. However, a great time to visit this gorgeous destination is during February through to and including May, with the best months being March and April, which is also part of their summer season. The days are warm and evenings pleasant, meaning you will be able to soak up all of the natural wonders during the sunshine followed by the late night parties.

HOW LONG TO SPEND IN NUWARA ELIYA

The minimum amount of time I would suggest to spend in Nuwara Eliya is 2 days, with a good amount of time being 4 days. Within this time period you will be able to experience the beautiful sites of the city, which include stunning botanical gardens, magnificent tea estates and wonderful mountains. If you love to hike then you will want to spend 4 days in Nuwara Eliya as there are some great trails to check out.

nuwara eliya

MUST-DO ACTIVITIES IN NUWARA ELIYA

Here are a handful of activities that you will want to add to your Nuwara Eliya bucket list…

Visit the tea plantations
It wouldn’t be a trip to Nuwara Eliya if you didn’t go to explore around one of the many tea plantations. The city is famous for being the most important tea production location within Sri Lanka. You will be surrounded by lush tea leaves and be able to drink as much as you like, especially if you take one of their guided tours.

Discover the waterfalls
There are many waterfalls located throughout Nuwara Eliya so you will not be disappointed. A great one to visit is the Lover’s Leap which is hidden away in the tea plantation fields, making it even more magical. There are several stories and myths related to this beautiful spot and it is one of the lesser visited spots.

Spend a day by Lake Gregory
You can wander around this beautiful lake which is the largest one in the centre of Nuwara Eliya. It is surrounded by fountains, pretty gardens and some lovely trails. There is also an option to hire a speedboat or swan paddle boat to have some fun out on the water.

Explore through Galway’s Land National Park
This park has several trails that you can walk along, and you can even go with a guide to help you spot some wildlife. Within the area there is also a unique ecosystem which the park was actually built to look after. 

Hike up Single Tree Hill
Here you have approximately a 90-minute hike that takes you up to see magnificent views overlooking Nuwara Eliya. You will be able to look out across the town, tea fields and mountains, a great way to soak up this gorgeous destination.

nuwara eliya

MORE SRI LANKA BLOGS

If you found this article informative for your journey from Ella to Nuwara Eliya and are interested in travelling to other places throughout Sri Lanka, then below you will find a great list of blogs filled with details on the best places to stay, how to get from one destination to the next and tips on what you should pack…

20 BEST HOTELS IN SRI LANKA WITH PRIVATE POOLS

20 BEST ECO LODGES & ECO RESORTS IN SRI LANKA

15 AWESOME THINGS TO DO IN SRI LANKA: THE ULTIMATE GUIDE

THE SRI LANKA PACKING LIST: WHAT TO PACK AND WHY 

KANDY TO ELLA TRAIN IN SRI LANKA: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW

HIKING TO DIYALUMA FALLS: SECOND HIGHEST WATERFALL IN SRI LANKA

HOW TO GET FROM COLOMBO TO KANDY BY TRAIN (COMPLETE GUIDE)

HOW TO GET FROM ELLA TO COLOMBO: COMPLETE GUIDE